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Vol. 51, No. 2, Summer 2012

Seeing Red Directors Den Family Overnight Safaris
Animal Chatter Animal Tails Estate Planning Safari
ZooMobile Calendar of Events  

Seeing Red

Jane trainingRumor has it that the Sacramento Zoo is the only zoo accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) in the U.S. to have a Red Panda participating in education outreach programs. Jane, the Zoo’s 15 year old Red Panda, made her debut on stage this spring, proving that great things can come in small packages.

Most zoos have a hands-off approach to panda education, due to their sensitive nature. Jane is aging gracefully but is no longer a viable option for breeding. Because of this, Jane has been able to transition into a more active education role. Curious and calm in her demeanor, Jane has made a very smooth shift into the world of education, becoming one of the only Red Pandas in this capacity. She can now be seen in the Zoo’s animal stage show presentations where she exhibits natural behaviors and talents that she would use in the wild. When Jane is not participating in a show, she can still be seen lounging on exhibit with her panda friends, Duande and Becky.

The addition of Jane to the education programs is not the only thing happening at the Zoo. A baby Mongoose Lemur recently became smaller additions to the Zoo.  The baby Mongoose Lemur was born March 30th. The lemur baby can be seen on exhibit with its parents.  It is estimated that there are between 1,000 and 10,000 Mongoose Lemurs left in the wild. The Sacramento Zoo is one of the few AZA-accredited institutions that house the fewer than 60 endangered Mongoose Lemurs in the United States.

Mongoose Lemurs are native only to the island of Madagascar off the southeastern coast of Africa, although they were introduced to the Comoro Islands of Moheli and Anjouan roughly 200 years ago. To help preserve these vanishing species, the Sacramento Zoo takes part in Species Survival Plans® (SSP) initiated by the AZA to cooperatively manage specific, and typically threatened or endangered,  populations in accredited institutions.

The Sacramento Zoo has been a proud part of the community for more than 85 years, helping families create new memories every day. During that time, work has been done to continually improve habitats, animal care and conservation efforts at the 14-acre Zoo.  Come make new memories with your family at the Sacramento Zoo with Jane and the lemur baby!

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Directors Den

Board Member HealyBirthdays. You either love ‘em or hate ‘em.  I have always thought that it is better to celebrate the milestones than pretend they are not happening. As the Zoo celebrates its 85th birthday, we hope you will join the year-long party.

Our always popular King of Feasts on June 23rd will be a chance for the “grown-ups” to celebrate. It is an evening filled with many of Sacramento’s fabulous local restaurants highlighting their favorite dishes accompanied by a wide variety of wineries and brew selections. The good news is we have so many savory and sweet options that the lines are never long and the animals and lush landscape provide the perfect backdrop for a delightful culinary stroll around the Zoo.

On the other side of the coin, the party for kids of ALL ages will be the 28th annual Ice Cream Safari on July 28th. For our birthday this year, it will be the Birthday Cake & Ice Cream Safari where you can take in all the Baskin Robbins Ice Cream you dare, feast on the Zoo’s birthday cake and wash it down with Coca-Cola beverages.
Wine or ice cream floats? Or both? You decide but don’t miss out; it’s going to be a party to remember!

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Family Overnight Safaris

As the sun goes down, nighttime wonders at the Zoo come alive. During summer months, the Sacramento Zoo offers Family Overnight Safaris, allowing families to camp out under the stars and explore the Zoo in a whole new light!

My girlfriends and I spent the night at the Sac Zoo last year for my 50th birthday! We had so much fun!  The food was great, the bonfire, stories and singing were a lot of fun, and the special tour of the Zoo was terrific. I even got to touch a hedgehog! (my favorite animal) The next morning we woke up to the sound of flamingos and a Kookaburra, a feat in itself - especially since I slept all night on a bag of tent stakes! Just the other day my girlfriends and I were saying how we should make the overnight safari an annual event! I hope this event continues for many years to come!
–Melody Herman

The first time we camped at the Sacramento Zoo we were fascinated by the flamingos!!! So beautiful, so elegant, so colorful that we decided to set up our tent as close to the flamingos as possible!!! We did not sleep a wink that night!  They kept us up all night, squawking and letting us know they were there! The next year, we set up our tent as far away as we could!! Each year we return, and laugh about our first camping night in the Sacramento Zoo!!! Never to be forgotten!
–Avery (8 years old) and G.G.

To find out how you can have your own nighttime adventure at the Zoo, visit the Overnight Safari page.

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Animal Chatter

American White PelicanBird Area
Two American White Pelicans have been added to the lake with the flamingoes. These birds were injured in the wild and were rescued when they could not migrate with their flock as winter came to Montana. After learning to eat from a friendly hand and going through medical examinations, they now reside at the  Sacramento Zoo. This species can also be seen in the Yolo Causeway and flying around the Central Valley at certain times of the year.

Primate AreaMongoose Lemur Baby
A very exciting birth occurred in March. The Mongoose Lemur infant is a first for both parents and you can see the baby clinging onto its mother like a fanny pack. The babies are born with female coloration (white under the chin) and if they are male infants, their color will change in a few months to a reddish-brown coloration under the chin.


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Animal Tails

Betty White and Dr. Murray E. FowlerAt a crowded airport, actress Betty White is surrounded by fans and autograph seekers. Suddenly, she sees a familiar face, sitting, waiting to board a flight. “Murray!” she exclaims. Breaking away from her admirers, she and the man cross the room to meet with smiles on their faces and embrace as only long lost friends would do.

A Hollywood producer or possibly her agent? No.

The gentleman that captured Ms. White’s attention was Dr. Murray E. Fowler. He and Ms. White, true ambassadors to animals worldwide, have had a long working relationship through their involvement in the Morris Animal Foundation.

Dr. Fowler is considered the father of zoological medicine and was the Sacramento Zoo’s veterinarian for 35 years; the Zoo’s vet hospital, opened in 2006, is named after him. Today at the Sacramento Zoo, visitors often drop by the state-of-the-art Dr. Murray E. Fowler Veterinary Hospital to view routine animal exams and other procedures. In 1958, Dr. Fowler joined the animal surgery staff at the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. A few years later, he agreed to head the first veterinary program to specifically serve the need of non-domestic animals, whether in captivity or in the wild, a field for which he coined the term “zoological medicine.” At this time, Dr. Fowler reached out to the Sacramento Zoo and a lasting partnership began. It was through this joint venture that the residency iZoological Medicine was established in 1974.

Dr. Fowler has traveled the world caring for animals as well as teaching and lecturing. He retired from veterinary medicine in 1991, but continues a lecture schedule around the globe and remains active as a consultant. After spending his life working with animals large and small, his story is captured in his autobiography, Murray: Hummingbirds to Elephants and Other Tales written in 1999.

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Estate Planning Safari
Protect Your Nest Egg

Tuesday, July 10
5:30 – 7 pm
Kampala Center

This free informative seminar will navigate through a jungle of estate planning topics presented by local attorney Mark S. Drobny, California State Bar Certified Legal Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law. Mr. Drobny is widely regarded as one of the top experts on estate planning, providing information on a variety of topics in an entertaining manner that will help you design a plan that fits your needs.

Topics will include, but are not limited to:

  • Living Trusts vs. Wills
  • Probate – How Can it be Avoided?
  • Who Needs Durable Powers of Attorney for Financial Management and Advance Health Care Directives?
  • Charitable Gift Annuities

Seating is limited. Email Pam Williams or call 916-808-3713 by Thursday, July 5, to guarantee your seat.

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Pat Walsh and the ZooMobile Visit Charles Mack Elementary

Students at Charles Mack Elementary School had been working very hard to earn top reading scores and surpass reading requirements so the teachers wanted to give them a reward. A group 40 fifth and sixth grade students received a surprise visit from the Zoomobile and local celebrity Pat Walsh, sports reporter for News Talk 1530, KFBK, who attended Charles Mack Elementary as a student.
Pat began the presentation by telling students about his time at Charles Mack and congratulating them for working so hard. He explained that if they continued to attend school and make good decisions they could be anything they wanted!

Lara and Brooke, who you may recognize from the stage shows and other education programs at the Zoo, followed Pat’s discussion with the real stars of the day, the animal ambassadors. Lara and Brooke instructed the students about the animals’ native habitats and what could be done to help animals in the wild.

For more information about the ZooMobile program, school visits or sponsoring a ZooMobile, visit the ZooMobile page.

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